In French menage is another word for a household or a group of people living together as a unit for mutual benefit. I know you guys know what a menage a trois is, so I won’t go there. But menagerie, contrary to the dictionary, is a collection of things that are not necessarily related but grouped together. And that is what this article is about.
This is a collection of thoughts and ideas I have had after viewing some of the sites that have posted one or more of the Codgerville articles. I was surprised by some of the comments in some respects, but not in others.
The really great folks (Roysyl) at http://www.theoildrum.com posted the Codgerville link on this TheOilDrum page and I was surprised at some of the comments. Then, when I looked at some of the traffic today I found a link to another site http://randompolicy.blogspot.com/2012/01/why-i-am-not-survivalist.html that seemed to reinforce the idea that I was a survivalist.
Like I said in the comment section of Mr. Michael Cain’s Blog I am not a survivalist, but rather a survivor. It is strange I think, that when someone comes from outside another person’s paradigm, that they are immediately misunderstood. There is a story that Wolfgang Helfrisch and Martin Schadt of F. Hoffmann La Roche of Basel, Switzerland, helped perfect the LCD technology invented by James Fergason of Kent State University in Ohio. The story goes, and I say story because I cannot confirm the validity of the story, that because of the innovation the two men practically tripped over each other getting to the brass at Hoffman La Roche Corporation. The business “geniuses” of a paradigm built upon Swiss jeweled movements looked at the discovery and said it would never amount to anything so forget it. Subsequently, 50,000 Swiss watchmakers lost their jobs because of an innovation that went contrary to the pervading paradigm.
How much of this is true, I do not know but it is a good story which illustrates the reluctance of the prevailing paradigm to adopt something new. It was similar, but less deadly, than the lesson learned by Benjamin Tyler Henry, the developer of the Henry rifle. It was radically new and very efficient but the War Department, steeped in tradition and lacking in vision, said that the rifle was too flimsy, too complicated for the average foot soldier and would not hold up under battlefield condition. This rifle was produced by a company (New Haven Arms Co.) run by Mr. Oliver Winchester and later became known as the “gun that won the west” having been tested under every conceivable condition know to any firearm. ‘Nuff said.
Now another observation is that I was “hardcore” survival nut. Now, I can almost plead 100% guilty on this count. All my life I have been referred to as one kind of nut or another. I was called a health, exercise nut, back to nature nut, organic gardening nut, a recycling nut, well, what they actually said was that I was cheap b*st*rd, but I knew what they meant. But a survival nut is new to me. Hey, I guess it is a compliment, I just never thought about it in those terms.
Von and I are thinking about upgrading the site and I’ll more or less leave that decision up to you folks. thePlanetPrisoner has been helping me with the site and has suggested advertising. I will only advertise if the people who I am representing on my site are purveyors of a product that I use and admire. Let me give a few examples. As most of you know I am a fan of the F.A.L. as produced by DSARMS (also their AR-15’s). I am constantly buying something from CheaperThanDirt (their website is filled with useful aids and resources and Augason Farms. I will weigh the feedback you give and if it would take away from the overall message of the site I will rethink it.
The next area we are considering is to include our own videos on the site or perhaps a YouTube Channel that would carry demonstrations of many of the topics we present here. Also, we would include a series of helpful tips such as AR-15 cleaning and building one from a kit. There may already be too many of these on the market so that may be unnecessary. Once again, I will leave that up to you the reader/viewer.
In actuality, one of my first video series would be how to safely can food for your family. Another would probably be about home gardening. How to make your own sausages. We think there might be enough interest to justify our upgrading the site in memory and all the other goodies you techies know more about than I do.
If you write comments on a regular basis or if you have never written a comment before, please let us hear from you about these topics. Also, if you have an idea where you would like us to concentrate our efforts, a specific topic or discipline let me know. My wife is a Master Gardener in New Mexico and I used to teach Master Gardeners in Louisiana, as well as greenhousing and farming. If you want more of these type articles, once again, let us know.
Having said all of this, and to quote Robert Duvall in the movie True Grit, “That’s mighty bold talk for a one-eyed fat man”, I still want our focus to be centered around helping people get prepared in 2012. On www.kerrylutz.com Kerry interviewed Ron Hera at the Vancouver Resource Conference and Ron gave a memorable quote, “2012 will be the end of cheap everything.” I thought this was an especially memorable quotation because I have said the same thing in some of my articles. If you don’t prepare in 2012 it may be too expensive or not available later.
Having said that, please do not do anything rash. I would like all of you to take your time, expeditiously, talk it over with your loved ones, watch your budget and if you’re a Christian, Jewish, Muslim, PRAY. If you are an agnostic, atheist, Buddhist, Hindu or whatever, meditate on the problem before committing to any course of action. If you want my input, for what it is worth, let me know and I will give you my take on the situation. But know this, it is your situation so you are the expert. Most people make good decisions, my grandson excluded, what they usually lack is the confidence.
In the military we had a thing called a Confidence Course. You crawled through the mud, walked over water on poles, had to swing over on ropes, climb a muddy vertical hillside on a rope and all kinds of crazy things. You did it over and over. The more you did, the better you became, because you built up CONFIDENCE in yourself and your abilities. It is the same way with making decisions. The more decisions you make, the tougher they get, the better decision-maker you become.
I had a supervisor criticize my decision-making. He said I made decision too quickly. I asked him what bad decision I had made. He told me that all my decisions were good but that I made them too quickly. I informed him that once you make life and death decisions in a split second, everything else is a piece of cake, if you have good information. Get the best information you can, weigh all the options and then make an informed decision. Then stand by it.
Once again, if you will, please leave a comment relative to some of the topics discussed here. I think we will try to start making changes sometime in February or March.
Just remember, decision-making can be hard work.
As always, good luck and God bless you all.